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Fri Aug 1, 2014, 10:54 PM

I was particularly impressed by something in the news this week.

Unfortunately it involves the tragedy of the ebola outbreak in Africa. A news show happened to mention that one doctor who died while treating patients was a sheik. Sorry I don't remember his exact name. However, that's less important than the fact that here was a person of means who could clearly be living a life of ease but chose instead to serve his fellowman at great personal risk to himself. I always find that sort of thing noble, wondering - doubting, if you must know - whether I'd be willing to risk my own life and comfort that way for people I don't know, just on principle.

Part of the reason I'm posting this is because I retired to a remote tiny town in the Midwest where almost everyone's a carbon copy of the next (although it doesn't stop them from fighting like cats and dogs!). There are no minorities of any kind here unless you count me, the only outspoken liberal around. When I hear people say dumb things about other people I know very well they've never met, I do try to give them a gentle admonition. But although I know a certain amount of history, that's too far in the past to matter to these people. Having been marooned here for quite a few years, I no longer have direct personal friends of other religions and ethnicities to cite as admirable examples. Specificity carries weight in statements.

Now I'm really sorry the good doctor died, particularly from such a dread disease. I'm also sure he must have loved ones who'll miss him sorely. But the next time some yahoo says something stupid around me, I will have an excellent example to offer them of conduct superior to their own. There are many others, I'm sure; although as I said, my direct knowledge is sorely lacking. I once googled 'famous American Muslims' for people everyone would recognize, but at the moment I only remember Kasey Kasim and Dr. Mehmet Oz. I know there are countless others, so I need to google that again.

Anyway, I'll never forget the sheik and intend to make sure these people here don't either, even though they're xenophobic as geese.

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